The Best Mac and Cheese in Every State (Build Your Own at #30)

From classic comfort to innovative twists, find the perfect mac and cheese spot near you.
Updated May 8, 2024
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When you’re looking for comfort food, nothing is as rich and creamy as mac and cheese.

Whether it has a crispy, flakey crust, a wide range of cheeses, or the perfect cheese pull, you know it’s going to be a good meal when it’s on your plate.

So grab your top travel credit cards, skip the franchises, and join us on a journey to find some of the best mac and cheese in every state.

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Alabama: August’s Barbeque (Sylacauga)

Ezume Images/Adobe mac-n-cheese

You can’t have good barbeque in Alabama without top-of-the-line mac and cheese. There’s no better version than the homemade creaminess from August’s Barbeque.

Your plate (with smoked turkey, ribs, and brisket) isn’t complete without a cup of their scratch-made mac and cheese. Sometimes, they even sell out.

Alaska: Spenard Roadhouse (Anchorage)

grinchh/Adobe homemade baked macaroni

A classic eatery, Spenard Roadhouse is noted for its cocktails and pizza (the Thai curry is really good, too). However, it’s that side of mac and cheese that will get you.

It’s made with parmesan, cheddar, and jack, and bread crumbs. When you need some veggies with it, consider adding broccoli.

Arizona Bootleggers Modern American Smokehouse (Phoenix)

Mehriban/Adobe macaroni and cheese comfort food

The made-from-scratch goodness at Bootleggers Modern American Smokehouse is outstanding. It’s made with a bechamel sauce base and topped with panko crumbs.

The mac and cheese (which you can also get in fried bite-sized portions) is dense, creamy, and rich.

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Arkansas: Dizzy’s Gypsy Bistro (Little Rock)

FomaA/Adobe Mac and cheese

This is a fantastic, upscale, and upbeat restaurant with the best mac and cheese around. Dizzy’s Gypsy Bistro’s recipe is a white truffle mac and cheese for that extra level of indulgence.

Pair it with a blueberry margarita and relax under the beautiful chandeliers surrounded by stunning art.

California: Wayfare Tavern (San Francisco)

fahrwasser/Adobe mac and cheese in iron pan

Wayfare Tavern is an exceptional location offering fantastic scratch-made foods. Pair your prime beef tartare or Skuna Bay salmon with mac and cheese for the perfect meal.

The mac and cheese features luscious cheese, smoked olive oil, and chives topping.

Colorado: Steuben’s (Denver)

GnrlyXYZ/Adobe homemade mac and cheese

Steuben’s beats out all the mac and cheese chains throughout the state. The mac and cheese here comes in bite-sized shells with bechamel.

Add what you want to it, from bacon and steak to lobster, chicken, or green chiles.

Connecticut: Roosters Co. (Newington)

Igor Dutina/Adobe american mac and cheese

Roosters Co. is noted for its locally sourced chicken and warm but industrial vibe. It’s hard to miss the mac and cheese on this menu.

It’s a truffled mac ‘n cheese with cheddar and parmesan. You’ll love the tanginess of this combination.

Delaware: Farmer & The Cow (Wilmington)

grinchh/Adobe homemade baked macaroni

Farmer & The Cow is a notable joint for its burgers and shakes (along with their bourbon).

The menu also includes mac and cheese. What’s so great about it? It’s that base of bacon jam, topped with a fabulous cheese blend.

Florida: Al’s Finger Licking Good Soul Food (Tampa)

william/Adobe mac and cheese

At Al’s Finger Licking Good Soul Food, you’ll find big portions of freshly prepared foods, from pork chops to the best burgers around.

The mac and cheese is a homestyle version, cooked to just the right bite and topped with plenty of cheese.

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Georgia: Fat Matt’s Rib Shack (Atlanta)

kwanbenz/Adobe mac-and-cheese-with-tomato-sauce

The vibe at Fat Matt’s Rib Shack is outstanding. This simple counter service location is known for its live blues music every night.

The mac and cheese is a huge portion cooked to perfection with just the right bake on top.

Hawaii: The Surfing Pig Hawaii (Honolulu)

Ezume Images/Adobe shell mac n cheese

The Surfing Pig Hawaii is a fantastic, upscale place to find excellent food and cocktails.

The mac and cheese (including the BBQ version) is rich and creamy with a slightly smokey taste.

Idaho: Saint Lawrence Gridiron (Boise)

fahrwasser/Adobe macaroni and cheese

The Saint Lawrence Gridiron is a New American-style eatery that serves upscale comfort food, including cocktails and mac and cheese.

You can make your mac and cheese a complete meal by adding brisket, pork, succotash, or hamburger. Otherwise, there’s no need — you’ll love it every way!

Illinois: Scratch Kitchen Public House Z (Oak Park)

Gregory Johnston/Adobe mac and cheese on a fork

Known for its mac and cheese, Scratch Kitchen Public House has options.

Try Zach’s Mac with a spicy nacho cheese sauce, sweet corn, and black beans. You can also choose the classic, truffle, or buffalo mac.

Don’t overlook the pizza mac ‘n cheese, with its sausage, pepperoni, and lots of gooey mozzarella cheese.

Indiana: Root & Bone (Indianapolis)

Vankad/Adobe mac and cheese with bacon

A vibe in its own right, Root & Bone is noted for its farm-fresh goodness and thoughtfully sourced foods.

You’ll find the menu super refreshing here, but the mac and cheese is hard not to think about the next day. It’s gooey and creamy and has a biscuit herb crust that takes it to the next level.

Iowa: Mullet’s Restaurant (Des Moines)

fahrwasser/Adobe mac in a cast iron pan

At Mullet’s Restaurant, you’ll enjoy lots of homemade foods, perhaps even sitting outside on the patio.

The mac and cheese at this roadhouse-style location is fantastic on its own, but with a cold beer and brisket, it’s even better.

Kansas: Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que (Kansas City)

Sunny Forest/Adobe american dish macaroni pasta

A true BBQ pitstop, it’s easy to find something to enjoy on the menu at Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Cue. The original location (they now have a few) is in an old gas station.

Buy mac and cheese by the cup, pint, or quart. It’s decadent and perfect as a side for pulled pork sandwiches.

Kentucky: Doc Crow’s (Louisville)

vm2002/Adobe homemade-mac-and-cheese

Doc Crow’s has an exceptional menu with refined BBQ, Southern flavors, and some of the area’s best oysters. The mac and cheese is on point.

It’s creamy and rich but not overpowering the other main dishes here. The cocktails are good, too.

Louisiana: Our Mom’s Restaurant & Bar (Baton Rouge)

AIGen/Adobe deliciously baked mac

At Our Mom’s Restaurant & Bar, you’ll find a menu full of delicious burgers and fresh-cut fries. Skip the fries and go for the mac and cheese as the side.

You’ll love the po’boy or burger well enough, but take it to the next level by adding mac and cheese. It’s worth the calories.

Maine: Maine Diner and Gift Shop (Wells)

Joshua Resnick/Adobe baked in cast iron skillet

If you're in town for the oceanfront, stop by Maine Diner and Gift Shop for surprisingly good but simple mac and cheese.

It’s all about comfort food here (the lobster pie and chowder are the best, too). The mac and cheese is a huge portion that is creamy, with just a bit of crispy cheese on top.

Maryland: Blue Pit BBQ & Whiskey Bar (Baltimore)

fahrwasser/Adobe mac and cheese in a foam bowl

Blue Pitt BBQ & Whiskey Bar is a local hangout with a menu of hard-to-beat smoked meats. Stop in for a cocktail during happy hour, or bring the kids in for huge meals.

The four-cheese mac and cheese is the perfect, overfilled cup of goodness. Choose a quart so you have some extra for a late-night snack.

Massachusetts: Mac-n-Choose (Tyngsborough)

Magrig/Adobe american macaroni dish

When you really want a professional, focused mac and cheese, you have to go to Mac-n-Choose.

If you like cheddar, go with the SM bacon cheddar with Cabot Milk and Sharp cheeses. The menu also includes pulled pork, chicken bacon ranch, and a huge blend of cheese options.

Michigan: Vinsetta Garage (Berkley)

komar.maria/Adobe macaroni and cheese

A former garage converted into an eatery with charbroiled burgers and a classic car-themed interior, it’s the mac and cheese that competes for the top spot on Vinsetta Garage’s menu.

The Union Mac is one of the best options with its Vermont sharp cheddar, but they also offer a gluten-free option.

Minnesota: Milton’s (Crystal)

Nelea Reazanteva/Adobe american style macaroni pasta

At Milton’s, the menu offers fantastic, authentic soul food paired with all-American favorites. It's a fun, laid-back location. Pick your favorite beer and then the mac and cheese.

The mac and cheese here is a noodle with a smooth and creamy cheddar cheese sauce.

Mississippi: The Pig & Pint (Jackson)

grinchh/Adobe homemade baked mac

In Jackson, you’ll find a beautiful destination called The Pig & Pint, which offers exactly what you need — craft beer (or cocktails) and BBQ plates packed with food.

The mac and cheese here has a smoky flavor and creamy base.

Missouri: Beer Kitchen (Kansas City)

gkrphoto/Adobe baked pasta with cheese

At Beer Kitchen, you’ll enjoy some fantastic burgers, but it’s that burnt ends mac and cheese that makes this location a must. Pair it with one of the craft brews on tap.

On the other hand, you can choose the build-your-own mac and cheese and add everything you want, from white truffle oil to Brussels sprouts.

Montana: Horn and Cantle (Big Sky)

Cavan/Adobe mac and cheese with vegan cheese

At Horn and Cantle, you’ll find a true log cabin-style location that serves the very best steaks and other goodies. Sit on the patio or by the fireplace and enjoy the atmosphere.

The mac-n-cheese is by far one of the best options on the menu. It includes Nueske’s bacon, English peas, and decadent cheeses.

Nebraska: Twisted Fork (Omaha)

FornStudio/Adobe macaroni

The smoked gouda mac-n-cheese at Twisted Fork is a flavorful option of cavatappi pasta covered in creamy smoked gouda. You can also add veggies, chicken, steak, bacon, or lobster.

This contemporary American destination offers fun foods on the menu and a vibrant atmosphere.

Nevada: The Mac & Grill Cheese Factory (Henderson)

juliedeshaies/Adobe butternut squash mac and cheese

At The Mac & Grill Cheese Factory, you definitely won’t run out of cheese options. Go with the spicy buffalo mac for tang or for decadent the truffle mac.

It’s all about flavor here. If you love cheese and are hungry, stop here for a big plate of your favorite comfort food.

New Hampshire: Mr. Mac’s (Manchester)

Maninder/Adobe mac & cheese

You’ll undoubtedly find mac and cheese at Mr. Mac's. The hard part is choosing which version to try this time.

There are many options, including Blazin’ Buffalo, chicken, broccoli, alfredo, cheeseburger, and more. You can even check out their take-and-bake options to make for dinner tomorrow.

New Jersey: The Grilled Cheese & Crab Cake Co. (Somers Point)

Vladimir/Adobe macaroni pasta with cheddar.

Seafood, grilled cheese, and lots of specialty sandwiches are available at The Grilled Cheese & Crab Cake Co.

The mac and cheese is next level. Build your own from a huge selection of meats and toppings (fried eggs, chicken cheese steak, onion rings, fried pickles… the list is nearly endless).

New Mexico: Range Café Downtown (Albuquerque)

Brent Hofacker/Adobe baked homemade macaroni

At Range Café Downtown, you’ll find an eclectic menu and a fun vibe. This destination (there are a few around the state) features American and Mexican options.

The NM mac and cheese is one of the best on the menu, with its cheddar and gouda blend and green chile to kick it up a notch.

New York: S’Mac (NYC)

bbivirys/Adobe macaroni and cheese dish

S’Mac is hard to beat. The location offers some of the best mac and cheese in the country. (Yes, you can also get low-carb and gluten-free options.)

Everything here is scratch-made, and it shows. Choose from numerous options, including veggies to masala and cajun versions.

North Carolina: Bear’s Smokehouse Barbecue (Asheville)

pilipphoto/Adobe chicken ranch mac and cheese

Bear’s Smokehouse Barbeque, a small chain in North Carolina and Connecticut, offers some of the best mac and cheese you will find anywhere.

The mac and cheese is baked until perfectly crispy on top. It makes a great foundation for your favorite smoked meats.

North Dakota – The Starving Rooster (Minot)

Brent Hofacker/Adobe bbq pulled pork mac and cheese

The wood-fired menu at The Starving Rooster is an excellent way to end any day. This eatery is all about freshly made, scratch-made foods.

The mac and cheese has a homemade buffalo cheese sauce that’s tangy and delicious. Pair it with anything.

Ohio: Lucky’s (Cleveland)

AkuAku/Adobe creamy mac and cheese

Lucky’s offers upscale, refined, and flavorful dishes that are a fresh take on well-loved favorites.

The mac and cheese is ideal, combining brie, cheddar, parmesan, and mozzarella into a fabulous cream.

Oklahoma: Cattlemen’s Steakhouse (Oklahoma City)

komar.maria/Adobe plateful of macaroni and cheese

While Cattlemen’s Steakhouse is all about the steak, cooked perfectly every time, and options like lamb fries, the mac and cheese is a hidden treasure.

Choose this decadent version to pair with any of the hearty meats on the menu, and you’ll have leftovers to take home.

Oregon: Screen Door Eastside (Portland)

Felix/Adobe macaroni and cheese on white plate

One of two locations, Screen Door Eastside, is such a homey, upbeat, and friendly establishment serving refined Southern cuisine that you’ll want to make it your favorite spot.

Nothing accompanies the buttermilk fried chicken better than the big servings of mac and cheese here.

Pennsylvania: Meat & Potatoes (Pittsburgh)

Brent Hofacker/Adobe spoonful of mac and cheese

At Meat & Potatoes, the chic, upbeat vibe sets the tone for this eclectic menu.

You can choose a drink, watch live music, and enjoy your cheddar and Cheeto crumb-topped mac and cheese.

Rhode Island: Rogue Island Local Kitchen & Bar (Providence)

Ezume Images/Adobe mac n cheese cellentani

At Rogue Island Local Kitchen & Bar, you can choose from several mac and cheese options, including a five-cheese version with Mornay sauce, a lobster version, and a Korean-style option.

They come hot from the oven in skillets, ready to fill your tummy.

South Carolina: Poogan’s Porch (Charleston)

Igor Dutina/Adobe mac and cheese

At Poogan’s Porch, you’ll always have traditional Southern cuisine to enjoy and a stunning Victorian townhome to do it in.

The mac and cheese here has country ham, cheddar, and toasted cornbread crumbs. Yum!

South Dakota: Squealer’s Smoke Shack Bar & Grill (Tea)

Vankad/Adobe bowlful of macaroni and cheese

At Squealer’s Smoke Shack Bar & Grill, you’ll find an upbeat, fun place to visit (there’s always a game on and great drinks being poured!)

The loaded mac and cheese is a huge portion, and it’s topped with pulled pork, stockyard, brisket, or chicken — whatever you want to enjoy.

Tennessee: Ramzy’s Meat & Tree (Nashville)

Ezume Images/Adobe shell mac n cheese

Ramzy’s is perhaps the simplest of counter-service locations, but it’s fantastic.

The food is all about smoked, fried, and cheesy. With large portions, the mac and cheese is one of the best on the menu. Pair it with baked fish, meatloaf, or fried chicken.

Texas: Nick & Sam’s (Dallas)

fahrwasser/Adobe mac and cheese in a cast iron pan

Nick & Sam’s is an upscale steakhouse noted for its huge portions of freshly prepared foods. Swanky is the best way to describe the interior.

As for food, the steaks are hard to beat, but the lobster mac and cheese, with its gooey texture and smoky flavor, comes close!

Utah: Station 22 (Provo)

ricka_kinamoto/Adobe macaroni pasta with cheesy sauce

At Station 22, guests enjoy a range of American classics, often made from scratch with local ingredients. It’s a popular destination with an industrial, laid-back vibe.

The award-winning mac and cheese combines smoked cheddar and parmesan Reggiano, finished with a bright herb blend.

Vermont: The Farmhouse Tap & Grill (Burlington)

DAVID/Adobe side of mac 'n cheese

There’s lots to love about The Farmhouse Tap & Grill, including its farm-to-table menu, upgraded foods, and craft beers.

The mac and cheese here is excellent. It’s creamy to a fault and then has nearly melted caramelized onions baked into it. The herb topping is fantastic, too.

Virginia: Johnny Ray’s Sultry Soul Food (Sterling)

rickegrant/Adobe mac and cheese with broccoli toppings

At Johnny Ray’s Sultry Soul Food, you’ll enjoy huge portions of some of the best in southern cuisine.

The collard greens are good, but the mac and cheese is a meal in itself. The live music here makes it even better.

Washington: Crockett’s Public House (Puyallup)

myviewpoint/Adobe mac and cheese with corn

Crockett’s Public House offers a huge menu of melts, sandwiches, and plates, everything made with care.

The lobster mac and cheese is one of the best, with fontina, white cheddar, pecorino Romano, and brie. It's exceptional!

West Virginia: Huntington Ale House (Huntington)

Ezume Images/Adobe shell macaroni

The Huntington Ale House serves huge steaks, has a fantastic brewpub atmosphere, and has some of the best mac and cheese in the area.

You can choose the original mac and cheese or upgrade to their pepperoni piazza mac and cheese or the Cajun version for even more flavor.

Wisconsin: Honeypie (Milwaukee)

Vankad/Adobe macaroni and cheese with scallions

Honeypie is a local favorite with midwestern-inspired dishes meant to fill your belly.

The creamy white cheddar mornay and buttered breadcrumb mac and cheese here are excellent. It’s topped with bacon and green onion, too.

Wyoming: Bubba’s Bar-B-Que Restaurant (Jackson)

Igor Dutina/Adobe american mac and cheese

Bubba’s Bar-B-Que Restaurant has a huge menu of treats, including some fantastic homemade pies.

This old-school-inspired destination also does a great job with the mac and cheese, which is piled high on your plate.

Bottom line

Atlas/Adobe woman eating macaroni

These restaurants put in the love and fresh ingredients to create gourmet comfort food that's worth a detour, even on a road trip.

So, step up your travel game and seek out these culinary gems for a truly memorable mac and cheese experience.

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Sandy Baker Sandy Baker is a has over 17 years of experience in the financial sector. Her experience includes website content, blogs, and social media. She’s worked with companies such as, Bankrate, TransUnion, Equifax, and Consumer Affairs.

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